Introduction

Areas on public conservation land where DOC has assessed the effects of using a drone. If you want to fly a drone we recommend you apply at one of these locations.

All drone concession applications are considered on a case by case basis. A number of factors must be taken into account, including:

  • the views of whānau, hapū, and iwi on drone use at that location
  • the effects on conservation values, (influenced by things like the size of the drone and the frequency with which you want to fly it)
  • policies and provisions in the relevant conservation management strategy or conservation management plan

There are some places on public conservation land where DOC has assessed the effects of using a drone. If you want to fly a drone we recommend you apply at one of the areas listed below. Due to the case by case assessment required, note there is no guarantee that any application to use a drone at one of the below locations will be approved.

Include the location name/s you are applying for in your application as listed below. Recommended locations forms are available for the Marlborough, West Coast, Canterbury, Otago and Fiordland regions. See recreational drone use application for more information.

If there is somewhere you would like to fly your drone that is not listed below you can still apply to use a drone at that location. We recommend you contact the local DOC office for advice before submitting your application. 

For information about using a drone in a national park, see Drone use in national parks.

North Island

There are no specific conservation areas in the North Island we specifically recommend you apply to fly a drone.

If you want to use a drone in the North Island, we recommend you talk to the local DOC office  to discuss where you want to fly a drone.

South Island

Marlborough

  • Marlborough Sounds campgrounds (we recommend applying to use a drone at these locations between March and November only):
    • Aussie Bay Campground (Momorangi Bay Recreation Reserve)
    • Moetapu Bay Campsite (Mount Cawte Scenic Reserve)
    • Nikau Cove/Picnic Bay (Sounds Foreshore Reserve)
    • Kenepuru Head Campsite (Kenepuru Esplanade Reserve)
    • Ferndale Campsite (Ferndale Scenic Reserve)
    • Butchers Flat Campsite (Wakamarina River Conservation area)
    • Moawhitu Campsite (D’Urville Island Scenic Reserve)
    • Cowshed Bay (Portage Bay Recreation Reserve)
  • Marlborough Sounds tracks:
    • Nydia track
    • Mt Stokes track
    • Wakamarina track
    • Doom track
    • Waikakaho/Cullen Creek track
    • Catherine Cove track
    • Ferndale tracks
    • Piwakawaka tracks
    • Putanui Point track
    • Jacob's Bay track
    • Opouri Bridle track
    • Archer's track
    • Stone Wharf track
    • Stone Huts track
  • Mt Richmond Forest Park
  • Ngakuta Bay Recreation Reserve (we recommend applying to use a drone at this location between March and November only)
  • Nydia Bay Recreation Reserve (we recommend applying to use a drone at this location between March and November only)
  • Pelorus Bridge Scenic Reserve (excluding the Pelorus Bridge (Kahikatea Flat) Campground. We recommend applying to use a drone at this location between March and November only)
  • Queen Charlotte Track (we recommend applying to use a drone at this location between March and November only)
  • Ship Cove Historic Reserve (we recommend applying to use a drone at this location between March and November only)

West Coast

  • Big River Track
  • Buller Gorge
  • Carew Falls track and waterfall
  • Charleston
  • Clarke Bluff (confluence of Haast and Landsborough rivers)
  • Coal Creek track and waterfall
  • Gillespies Beach
  • Hapuka Estuary
  • Kirwans Track
  • Kohaihai campground
  • Lake Ellery
  • Londonderry Rock (in Dillmanstown)
  • Lyell campground
  • Moeraki River Valley – Blue River Hut (Blowfly Hut)
  • North Beach
  • Pleasant Flat Recreation Reserve
  • Roaring Billy Falls
  • Ross Goldfields (historic reserve located near Donoghues Road, Ross - West Coast)
  • Smoothwater
  • The Old Ghost Road (note: some parts of the Old Ghost Road are on private land. You will need landowner permission to fly a drone over these areas)
  • Waiuta historic town
  • Woods Creek track

Canterbury

  • Bealey Spur Conservation Area
  • Bealey/Waimakariri Riverbed Conservation Area
  • Blue Mountain Conservation Area
  • Cass Valley Conservation Area
  • Chetwyn Conservation Area
  • Cheddar Valley Conservation Area
  • Conservation Area Ashley Riverbed Rakahuri
  • Craigieburn Forest Park
  • Four Peaks Conservation Area 
  • German Creek Marginal Strip
  • Hakatere Conservation Park
  • Hanmer Field Base and Picnic Area Conservation Area
  • Hanmer Forest Park
  • Head of Lake Sumner Conservation Area
  • Island Hills Conservation Area
  • Korowai/Torlesse Tussocklands Park
  • Lake Lyndon Marginal Strip
  • Lake Sumner Forest Park
  • Lewis Pass Scenic Reserve
  • Lochiel Conservation Area (contact the Rangiora Office to discuss which parts of Lochiel Conservation Area we recommend you apply for)
  • Lochinvar Forest Conservation Area
  • Lower Doubtful/Boyle River Conservation Area
  • Lottery Bush Scenic Reserve
  • Mason Waiau Riverbeds Conservation Area
  • Mt Peel/Waikari Hills Conservation Area
  • Mt Potts Conservation Area (excluding the top of Mt Sunday – private land)
  • Mt Grey/Maukatere Conservation Area
  • Mt Horrible Conservation Area
  • Mt Hutt Conservation Area (excluding Mt Hutt ski field)
  • Mt Dobson Conservation Area – Te Kahui Kapeka Conservation Park (excluding Mt Dobson ski field) 
  • Nina Doubtful Rivers Conservation Area
  • North Opuha Conservation Area
  • Peak Hill Conservation Area
  • Puketeraki Forest Conservation Area
  • Rangitata/Rakaia Headwaters Conservation Area
  • Recreation Reserve Waiau
  • Rockwood Conservation Area
  • Snowden Scenic Reserve
  • South Opuha Conservation Area
  • St James Conservation Area (excluding the area north of Lake Guyon. Contact the Rangiora Office to discuss which parts of St James Conservation Area we recommend you apply for)
  • Tenahaun Conservation Area
  • Terako Downs Scenic Reserve
  • The Hossack Conservation Area (contact the Rangirora Office to discuss which parts of the Hossack Conservation Area we recommend you apply for)
  • The Poplars Conservation Area
  • Waiareka Downs Conservation Area
  • Wairangi Scenic Reserve
  • Wandle Bush Conservation Area
  • Woodbank Conservation Area

Otago

  • Abbots Creek Recreation Reserve
  • Access to Tokomairiro River Conservation Area
  • Adams Flat Conservation Area
  • Akatore Creek Marginal Strip
  • Akatore Stream Marginal Strip
  • Allison Conservation Area
  • Awamoko Stream Conservation Area
  • Balclutha / Lawrence Road Conservation Area
  • Beaumont River – Castle Dent Marginal Strip
  • Beaumont River Marginal Strip
  • Big Bush Conservation Area
  • Big Bush Road Conservation Area
  • Black Swamp Conservation Area
  • Blackwood Rd (Kaikorai) Conservation Area
  • Bowlers Creek Marginal Strip
  • Bowlers Creek Scenic Reserve
  • Blueskin Bay Marginal Strip
  • Brinns Point Conservation Area
  • Brighton Recreation Reserve
  • Burns Park Scenic Reserve
  • Bungtown Beach Conservation Area
  • Careys Creek Conservation Area
  • Careys Creek Marginal Strip
  • Chalkies Scenic Reserve
  • Christie Gully Road Conservation Area
  • Chrystalls Beach Scenic Reserve
  • Church Hill Rd (Green Island) Conservation Area
  • Clarks Flat Conservation Area
  • Cotton Scenic Reserve
  • Craighall Crescent Recreation Reserve
  • Deep Creek Scenic Reserve
  • Deep Creek Marginal Strip
  • Deep Stream Conservation Area
  • Deep Stream Marginal Strip
  • Derby Street Recreation Reserve (Hampden)
  • Dunback Conservation Area
  • Evans Flat Conservation Area
  • Fortification Creek Marginal Strip
  • Flag Swamp Conservation Area
  • Frasers Conservation Area
  • Flat Top Hill Area – Alexandra
  • Gabriels Gully Bush Reserve Conservation Area
  • Gabriels Gully Conservation Area
  • Gabriels Gully Historic Reserve
  • Gabriels Gully Marginal Strip
  • Gabriel Read Memorial Reserve
  • Garden Bush Conservation Area
  • George King Drive / Lee Stream Conservation Area
  • Glenore Conservation Area
  • Glencoe Domain Conservation Area
  • Glencoe ‘Scenic Reserve’ Conservation Area
  • Glenorchy Road Recreation Reserve – Queenstown (we recommend applying to use a drone between Twenty Five Mile Recreation Reserve and the pull off area opposite Pigeon Island only)
  • Glendhu ‘Tussock Reserve’ Conservation Area
  • Goodwood Conservation Area
  • Goodwood Scenic Reserve
  • Grahams Bush Scenic Reserve
  • Hampden Public Purpose Reserve
  • Hampden Scout And Guide Hall
  • Hectors Creek Marginal Strip
  • Henley Conservation Area
  • Henley Scenic Reserve
  • Hereford / Monmouth Streets Public Purpose Reserve (Hampden)
  • Hereford / Shewsbury Streets Public Purpose Reserve (Hampden)
  • Hindon Community Centre
  • Hoods Creek Marginal Strip
  • Hope Hill Scenic Reserve
  • Hope Hill ‘Scenic Reserve’ Conservation Area
  • Horse Range Road Conservation Area
  • Horse Range ‘Tussock Reserve’ Conservation Area
  • Inch Valley Conservation Area
  • Jefferys Hill Conservation Area
  • Jimmys Creek and Waianakarua River North Branch Marginal Strip
  • Johnson Road Conservation Area
  • Kakaho Bush Conservation Area
  • Kaikorai Stream Marginal Strip
  • Kakaho Creek Marginal Strip
  • Kakanui Beach Road Conservation Area
  • Kakanui River Conservation Area
  • Kakanui River Marginal Strip
  • Kakanui River (North Branch - both banks) Marginal Strip
  • Kakanui River / Robbs Crossing Conservation Area
  • Kakanui River (South Branch) Marginal Strip
  • Kakanui River / River Road Conservation Area
  • Kauru River, Frenchs Road Conservation Area
  • Kauru River Marginal Strip
  • Kilmog Conservation Area
  • Kilmog Closed Road Conservation Area
  • Kilmog Quarry Reserve Conservation Area
  • Knights Dam Marginal Strip
  • Kuri Bush Recreation Reserve
  • Kurinui Creek Marginal Strip
  • Kuriiti Creek Recreation Reserve
  • Kuriiti Creek Recreation Reserve (Hampden) Kyeburn Marginal Strip
  • Lake Mahinerangi Conservation Area
  • Lee Stream Marginal Strip
  • Lee Stream Road Quarry Reserve Conservation Area
  • Leith Valley Scenic Reserve
  • Livingstone Dam Site Conservation Area
  • Livingstone - Duntroon Road Quarry Reserve Conservation Area
  • Lower Waitaki Catchment Marginal Strip
  • Manuka Gorge ‘Scenic Reserve’ Conservation Area
  • Manuka Hill Conservation Area
  • Mahinerangi Road Quarry Reserve Conservation Area
  • Mihiwaka Conservation Area
  • Mill Dam Conservation Area
  • Milton Afforestation Reserve
  • Moneymore Conservation Area
  • Mount Cargill Scenic Reserve
  • Mt Watkins Road Conservation Area
  • Munro Gully Road Conservation Area
  • Munro's Gully Bush Reserve Conservation Area
  • Nardoo Stream Marginal Strip
  • Norwich / Lincoln Streets Recreation Reserve (Hampden)
  • Nottingham Street Recreation Reserve (Hampden)
  • Onewhenua Conservation Area
  • Orbells Creek Marginal Strip
  • Otago Pioneer Quartz (OPQ) Conservation Area
  • Otekaieke Access Strip Conservation Area
  • Otekaieke River Conservation Area
  • Otokia Road Conservation Area
  • Orokonui Marginal Strip
  • Pigeon Bush Scenic Reserve
  • Pine Hill Scout Hall
  • Pioneer Stream Historic Reserve
  • Pleasant River Marginal Strip
  • Ramrock Road (Waikouaiti) Conservation Area
  • Razorback Ridge / Kurinui Creek Conservation Area
  • Reedy Creek Marginal Strip
  • Rocklands Road Quarry Reserve
  • Round Hill Conservation Area
  • Russell Road ‘Rock Reserve’ Conservation Area
  • Sawyers Bay Conservation Area
  • Seacliff Conservation Area
  • Shag River Conservation Area
  • Shag River / Glenpark Conservation Area
  • Shag River Marginal Strip
  • SH 1 / Lawrence Conservation Area
  • SH 87 / Woodside Road Conservation Area
  • Shrewsbury Street Recreation Reserve (Hampden)
  • Sir John MacKenzie Memorial Historic Reserve
  • Smith Rd / Livingstone Gravel Reserve Conservation Area
  • Spiers Road Conservation Area
  • St Clair Recreation Reserve
  • Stoneburn Quarry Reserve Conservation Area
  • Stony Stream Marginal Strip
  • Stony Stream Scenic Reserve
  • Sullivans Bush Scenic Reserve
  • Sullivans Bush Conservation Area
  • Taieri Gorge / Outram Glen Scenic Reserve
  • Taieri River Marginal Strip
  • Taioma Road Conservation Area
  • Te Papanui Conservation Park
  • Te Papanui Conservation Area
  • Te Hakapureirei Beach Marginal Strip 
  • The Wisp (drone use is only likely to be approved before 10am, and after 3pm)
  • Three O`clock Stream Marginal Strip
  • Timber Creek Conservation Area
  • Tokarahi Conservation Area
  • Tokaraki Conservation Area
  • Tokoiti Conservation Area
  • Tokomairiro River (West Branch) Conservation Area
  • Tokomairiro River (West Branch) Marginal Strip
  • Tokomairiro River East Branch Marginal Strip
  • Town of Hull Cemetery Conservation Area
  • Trotters Block / Pigeon Bush Conservation Area
  • Trotters Creek Marginal Strip
  • Trotters (Ex Herbert Forest) Conservation Area
  • Trotters Gorge Scenic Reserve (we recommend applying to use a drone at this location between January and August only)
  • Tuapeka Creek Marginal Strip
  • Tuapeka East Conservation Area
  • Tuapeka Flat Conservation Area
  • Tuapeka Conservation Area
  • Tuapeka River Marginal Strip
  • Twenty Five Mile Recreation Reserve
  • Verter Burn Marginal Strip
  • Victoria Rd Conservation Area
  • Waianakarua River Marginal Strip
  • Waianakarua River Middle Branch Marginal Strip
  • Waianakarua River North Branch Marginal Strip
  • Waianakarua Scenic Reserve Addition
  • Waianakarua to Kakaho Creek Coastline Marginal Strip
  • Waianakarua River Conservation Area
  • Waianakarua Scenic Reserve
  • Waiareka Stream Conservation Area
  • Waikouaiti Conservation Area
  • Waipori River Conservation Area
  • Waipori Falls ‘Scenic Reserve’
  • Waipori Falls ‘Scenic Reserve’ Conservation Area
  • Waitahuna / Cowan Road Conservation Area
  • Waitahuna Conservation Area
  • Waitahuna Gully Conservation Area
  • Waitahuna River ‘Bush Reserve’ Conservation Area
  • Waitaki River Marginal Strip
  • Westwood Recreation Reserve
  • Wetherstons Conservation Area
  • Whare Creek Marginal Strip
  • Wilkinsons Road Conservation Area Winifred Street Conservation Area

Fiordland

These locations refer to recreational drone use only. To use a drone for commercial filming contact the local DOC office.

  • Cascade Campsite within Fiordland National Park (excluding the Lake Gunn Nature Walk) between 10 am and 3 pm only
  • Eglington Valley within Fiordland National Park (at least 200 m from Milford Road) before 10 am and after 3 pm only
  • Lake Gunn day use area, within Fiordland National Park

  

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